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Heavy-Handed Politics

"€œGod willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world
without the United States and Zionism."€ -- Iran President Ahmadi-Nejad

Saturday, January 14, 2006


Don Surber aptly points out NARAL Rents A Seat At The Alito Hearing.

He asks, "Is NARAL pulling its own Jack Ambramoff?"

Kate Michelman of NARAL was not only at the hearings, she particpated in it. What was she doing there at the hearings testifying along with judges and attorneys? How did she pull this off?

"Simple," says Surber. "NARAL bought her way into that hearing chamber. It has given $5,000 this year to the re-election campaign of Ted Kennedy"
In the 2004 campaign, NARAL gave $9,000 to Russ Feingold -- Mr. Campaign Finance Reform himself! $9,000 and NARAL just happens to get to testify at every judiciary committee hearing on Supreme Court justices. Ted got another $5,000 in 2004.
Campaign finance reform is beginning to look about as successful as was prohibition.

Friday, January 13, 2006


Al Qaida's Zawahiri calls for attacks on Gulf oil sites

Al Qaida has issued a series of appeals for Islamic insurgency strikes on Gulf state oil and natural gas installations.

The appeals have been made by Al Qaida's No. 2, Ayman Zawahiri. Read on.

Riots are feared in Russia

"Some commentators fear a revolution as more and more Russians turn to violence on discovering empty supermarket shelves."

Empty supermarket shelves, you say. What product is causing this mayhem that have some commentators fearing a revolution could take place?

Vodka! That makes sense if you think about it. Can you imagine Russians without vodka?

Islamic cleric had 'terror manual' with Western targets

He faces a total of 15 charges, including nine of "soliciting to murder."

LONDON (AFP) - Islamic cleric Abu Hamza kept a terrorism "manual" which was dedicated to Osama bin Laden and suggested a list of high-profile international targets, a London court was told.

Ten volumes of the 11-volume "Encyclopaedia of Afghani Jihad" found at the one-eyed, hook-handed imam's west London home advised hitting landmarks like London's Big Ben, the Statue of Liberty or the Eiffel Tower, the jury was told. Full story.

Anti-Alito Groups Speak for Majority, Activist Says

(CNSNews.com) - Activists protesting the nomination and likely confirmation of Judge Samuel Alito to the U.S. Supreme Court said Friday that Alito is out of the mainstream and that his opponents "represent the values of the majority of Americans." Andrew Gillum, city commissioner of Tallahassee, Fla., told reporters at the U.S. Capitol that Alito is an "ideologue" who would "be the farthest right-speaking voice" on the court. He added that groups opposed to his confirmation are "consistent with the views of the majority of Americans." A Washington Post-ABC News poll released Monday found that 53 percent of Americans support Alito's confirmation. Only 27 percent said the Senate should reject him. Full Story


Gore (Vice President during Echelon) to Condemn Bush's Wiretapping Program

(CNSNews.com) - When former Vice President Al Gore criticizes President Bush's secret wiretapping program in a planned speech Monday, he'll be introduced by a Republican critic of the president, Human Events reports. The Democrat is reportedly joining up with former Republican Congressman Bob Barr, a critic of Bush on national security issues, who led the campaign to impeach President Bill Clinton. The speech, which is scheduled for Martin Luther King Day in the nation's capital, is sponsored by MoveOn.org and the libertarian Liberty Coalition.

It does not seem Albert Gore was disturbed over Echelon while he spent 8 years as Vice President (why is that?) which according to Wikipedia:

ECHELON is a highly secretive world-wide signals intelligence and analysis network run by the UKUSA Community. [1] ECHELON can capture radio and satellite communications, telephone calls, faxes and e-mails nearly anywhere in the world and includes computer automated analysis and sorting of intercepts. [2] ECHELON is estimated to intercept up to 3 billion communications every day.

Articles on Echelon.


Statistics Confirm Earlier Report on Katrina Deaths
– Updated information released Wednesday by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals confirms an earlier Cybercast News Service analysis, which found that whites died at a higher rate than blacks in Hurricane Katrina...

EU troika, Russia, China and US to meet in London on Iran Monday
Xinhua - China
High-ranking diplomats from Britain, Germany, France, Russia, China and the United States will meet in London Monday to discuss the ...

From the "Village Academic Curriculum" File...

After years of stonewalling, Big Labor lost a Big Battle recently. New federal rules pushed through by Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao force unions to disclose in much more detail how they spend members' dues. It's no secret why Big Labor fought the change so hard: Unions provide a fat living for the fat cats running them and are a de-facto money house for the loony left.

The National "Education" Association is a prime example. Reg Weaver, the union's president, draws $439,000 a year. The NEA's $58-million payroll for just over 600 employees, includes more than half who draw six-figure salaries.

--- The Patriot

Regarding the redistribution of your income...

The 2006 Index of Economic Freedom report by the Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal again illustrates what The Patriot has continued to note in the past—lower taxes and regulations lead directly to higher income growth and higher tax revenues.

The Index and most economists predict that economic growth for 2006 will continue apace for the United States. Due to the Fed's recent rate increases, inflation will likely remain in check. Real estate will fluctuate somewhat, with prices realigning more with actual property values in a given location. Assuming no disasters or emergencies, energy prices likely will remain static with the possibility of retreat if additional production is brought on line.

Republican-initiated lower tax rates will continue to translate into lower trade and budget deficits.

Due to the success of Republican tax policies, lower tax rates will continue to translate into lower trade and budget deficits, while the stock market will continue to rise. To preserve and further this growth, congressional conservatives should work to curb federal spending—perhaps new leadership will work to that very end.

--- The Patriot

How does Kofi keep a straight face?

Despite the fact that on Tuesday, Iran announced that it has resumed work on its uranium enrichment program after two years, and that the seals, placed on equipment at the enrichment plant at Natanz in 2003 by the International Atomic Energy Agency, were removed, Kofi Annan says Iran is still "interested in serious and constructive negotiations."

Where would we be without the U.N. and Kofi's leadership? The removal of the seals suggests something else, does it not?

"I don't think it's appropriate or useful to look to foreign law in interpreting the provisions of our Constitution. I think the Framers would be stunned by the idea that the Bill of Rights is to be interpreted by taking a poll of the countries of the world. The purpose of the Bill of Rights was to give Americans rights that were recognized practically nowhere else in the world at the time. The Framers...wanted them to have the rights of Americans."

--- Judge Samuel Alito

"Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence...the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake; since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of Republican Government."

--- George Washington


Looking at the spectacle of Judge Alito's hearing, one is left to conclude that it has nothing to do with his qualifications, and everything to do with the Left's power to implement its political and social agendas.

.......[back] in 1987 when Ronald Reagan nominated Alito to be a U.S. District Attorney, Kennedy's vote was among the Senate's unanimous consent. And when Sam Alito was nominated for the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in 1990, he again received Kennedy's vote and unanimous consent from the Senate.

......the stage show is about political agendas, not "advice and consent" —specifically, the Left's objection to the fact that Judge Alito is precisely what our Founders desired in a jurist—one who will interpret the plain language of our Constitution, not amend it by way of judicial diktat, as has been the practice of Leftist judicial activists for decades. That practice has all but rendered the Judiciary, in the inimitable words of Thomas Jefferson, a "Despotic Branch".

"If confirmed," blustered Kennedy, "Alito could very well fundamentally alter the balance of the court and push it dangerously to the right." Sen. Hillary Rodham-Clinton (or is it just "Clinton" these days?) concurred: "The fate of the Supreme Court hangs in the balance." Chuck Schumer added, "Alito is a controversial nominee for a pivotal swing vote on the High Court who could shift the balance of the court, and thus the laws of the nation, for decades to come."

Where does the Constitution authorize judges to make laws?

What balance? Just where does the Constitution specify that judges are supposed to make the laws? To borrow from its author, James Madison, we cannot undertake to lay our finger on that article of the Constitution, which states that certain Supreme Court justices are supposed to be "swing" justices.

As penned by Alexander Hamilton in The Federalist Papers, the definitive explication of our Constitution, "[T]here is not a syllable in the [Constitution] which directly empowers the national courts to construe the laws according to the spirit of the Constitution..."

From the Fed. Patriot

Vegemite may spread to China
Stuff.co.nz - Wellington,New Zealand
Kraft Foods, the maker of Vegemite, plans to close one of its Melbourne factories and move the jobs to China and there are fears it may ultimately shift ...

US House group on China visit
China Daily - China
By Xu Binglan (China Daily). Founders of the United States House of Representatives' China Working Group are in China for their first ...

Forests will not help: study urges rethink on global warming issues

Just another example proving we know so little about global warming.

"HEIDELBERG: Scientists here did a double take when they found plants emitting methane – one of the gases blamed for global warming.

A chance finding can turn a long held belief system upside down as was proved by Frank Keppler and his colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics. Keppler, an environmental engineer first noticed signs of methane emissions by plants in normal air.

The incredulous scientist and his colleagues then placed grass and leaves from tropical plants in methane-free chambers.

The tests were repeated with living plants and the results are enough to make the community of environmentalists to do a rethink on the role of forests in controlling global warming.

At a rough calculation, the plant population around the world could be contributing between 10 percent and 30 percent to the world's total methane emission, i.e. about 600 million tones a year, they said. In the last 150 years, methane content in the atmosphere has almost tripled and large concentrations of the gas have been seen above tropical forest areas when observed from space.

Methane is considered second only to carbon dioxide for causing the greenhouse effect i.e. trapping the sun's energy in the atmosphere. Until now it was believed that forests serve as the lungs of our planet generating oxygen for living organisms and maintaining the atmospheric balance and temperature.

The scientific community was less inclined to believe that plants could emit methane and had classified very few natural sources of methane, such as swamps, rice paddies and environments with low oxygen levels where a combination of plant and bacteria activity produced methane. Other examples of methane contributing environments include coal mines, farting or belching animals, city rubbish dumps.

The results have also nudged the community of environmentalists to reconsider their stand on environmental issues."

U.S.’ China-Taiwan Dilemma

World’s No. 1 tech power faces increasing difficulty managing relations with long-time ally and world’s fastest-growing economy.
Red Herring

Managing relations with the tech powers of Taiwan and China will become trickier than ever for the United States as it aims to maintain dominance in the industry without irritating the two quarreling countries divided by the Taiwan Strait, experts said Thursday.

That was a major theme discussed at the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council conference in Santa Clara, California, focusing on how politics and business practices impact the semiconductor industry in the three countries.

"It is the duty of parents to maintain their children decently, and according to their circumstances; to protect them according to the dictates of prudence; and to educate them according to the suggestions of a judicious and zealous regard for their usefulness, their respectability and happiness."

-- James Wilson, 1791

China stands as world's 2nd largest auto market
People's Daily Online - Beijing,China
The statistics from the China Automotive Industry Association (CAIA) prove that China's auto market continued to maintain a stable and fast growth last year ...

Iraq: Three Reasons for Optimism, But Dangers Still Ahead
Asharq Alawsat - London,UK
... Arab Sunni parties ignored an appeal by Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Al Qaeda number-two, and Abu-Mussab al-Zarqawi, the Al Qaeda chief in Iraq, to boycott the ...

China seen opposing, but not vetoing, Iran sanctions
Malaysia Star - Malaysia
BEIJING (Reuters) - China would frown on sanctions against Iran should efforts to curb its nuclear programme be brought before the UN Security Council, but ...

China`s developing world energy strategy
Monsters and Critics.com - Glasgow,UK
BEIJING, China (UPI) -- A big part of China`s efforts to put its affairs in order before lunar new year celebrations is focused on energy security issues with ...

China Cautions Against Bringing Iran Nuke Issue to UN Council
Bloomberg - USA
China cautioned today against taking the issue of Iran's nuclear program to the United Nations Security Council, saying that doing so might lead the Iranian government to end all cooperation with the UN's nuclear watchdog agency.

"Referring it to the Security Council might complicate the issue,'' Wang Guangya, China's ambassador to the UN told reporters in New York. "That might make some of the parties more tough on this issue. That is our concern.'' Read on.

Spain arrests suspected terror recruiter
Science Daily (press release) - USA
... Evidence of Zarqawi network in Europe (December 22, 2005) -- There is growing evidence that Iraq insurgency leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's network throughout ...

RNC member calls for anti-illegals vote
The Washinton Times
A Republican National Committee member has gathered enough signatures to engineer a party vote next week on a resolution that calls for tougher immigration and border enforcement and opposes a guest-worker plan in what could be a head-to-head showdown on........

Alito emerges unscathed from grueling hearings
The Wasington Times
After 18 hours of testimony and 700 questions, Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr. kept his Supreme Court nomination on track despite the efforts of Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee to flap the unflappable jurist from New Jersey.

3,414 Felons' Rights Restored

"We want them to vote Democrat to reintegrate them fully into society, and part of that means getting your voting rights back." -- Gov. Warner

The Washington Times

RICHMOND -- Gov. Mark Warner, whose last day as Virginia's chief executive is tomorrow, ends his four-year term with the distinction of having restored the voting rights of 3,414 felons -- more than any other governor in state history and far ahead of the totals in 12 of the 13 other states that deny convicts the right to vote.

"We have restored more voting rights than four previous governors combined," Mr. Warner told The Washington Times. "We want to encourage people to [apply] who have served their time and had some ensuing period where they had stayed out of trouble. We want to reintegrate them fully into society, and part of that means getting your voting rights back." Full story.

Alito expected to be confirmed
The Washington Times
Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr. yesterday appeared headed for confirmation to the Supreme Court after Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats exhausted their arsenal of questions without landing any devastating blows.

Iran Rattling Diplomatic Sabers
ThreatsWatch.Org - USA
... In response to the growing clamor to have Iran referred to the United Nations Security Council, it has renewed the threat and grown increasingly belligerent in ...


The Strata-Sphere has a post which highlights some of the questions from a recent Opinion Dynamics Poll.

He feels "the liberals are taking a well deserved shellacking on their calls to Impeach Bush for using the NSA to stop Terrorists in the US. Fox News has the latest Opinion Dynamics Poll showing the country lining up behind Bush, which means against the liberal democrats."

Click on the poll links to see all the questions. (It is in PDF format.)

He sights these questions from the poll in particular:

25. Do you think the Patriot Act has helped prevent terrorist attacks in the United States or not?

10-11 Jan 06

Yes - 59%
No - 29
Not Sure - 12

26. Based on what you know, do you support or oppose extending the Patriot
Act when it comes up for renewal?

10-11 Jan 06

Support - 57%
Oppose - 31
Not Sure - 11

29. When you hear of government officials anonymously leaking top-secret national security information to the press, are you more inclined to think of the officials as patriots who are blowing the whistle because they think something illegal might be going on, or traitors who are leaking government secrets and possibly causing harm to the country? (ROTATE)

10-11 Jan 06

Whistle Blowers - 27%
Traitors - 50
Not Sure - 23

30. Do you think the president should or should not have the power to authorize the National Security Agency to monitor electronic communications of suspected terrorists without getting warrants, even if one end of the communication is in the United States?

10-11 Jan 06

Should - 58%
Should Not - 36
Not Sure - 6

31. In an effort to identify terrorist activity, do you think the president should or should not have the power to authorize the National Security Agency to do computer searches of large numbers of international phone calls coming in and out of the United States without getting warrants?

10-11 Jan 06

Should - 60%
Should Not - 34
Not Sure - 7

33. Would you personally mind having the National Security Agency monitor an international telephone call of yours?

10-11 Jan 06

Yes - 33%
No - 60
Not Sure - 3
Don’t Call Overseas - 3

By almost two to one, the public is giving the President permission to execute the NSA plan, even on themselves if necessary.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Govt. Program to Register Foreign Visitors Under Attack

– A U.S. government program initiated in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks to monitor visitors from certain foreign countries should be eliminated because it has “created chaos and fear,” according to the Arab American Institute...

Russia Won't Block U.S. on Iran

Commitment Is Cited by Officials Pressing for IAEA Vote
Washington Post

The Bush administration, working intensely to galvanize international pressure on Iran, has secured a guarantee from Russia that it will not block U.S. efforts to take Tehran's nuclear case to the U.N. Security Council, American and European officials said yesterday. Read on.


It's over finally. I'm glad. Personal attacks by Democrat Senators trying to paint Alito as a racist, drove his wife to tears on Wednesday, forcing her to get up and leave the confirmation hearings for a brief period.

Mrs. Alito became teary eyed and emotional when South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham apologized for the slimy accusations to which her husband had been subjected.

"Judge Alito, I am sorry that you've had to go through this. I am sorry that your family has had to sit here and listen to this," Graham said.

Implying that the attacks on her husband caused her to get emotional, Senator Orrin Hatch said, "She's sick and tired of the mistreatment of her husband."

Shortly afterwards, having regained her composure, Mrs. Alito returned to the hearing room. The other sad part of the story is that the AP tried to paint the picture that it was the mean Senator Graham that caused Mrs. Alito to cry and the left wing bloggers ran with it.

Alito accused of racism
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday raised the volume of their objections to the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr. by grilling him over his ties to a Princeton alumni group that they called racist and misogynist.

Senators show claws at hearing, sling zingers
The Alito confirmation hearings had been a largely placid affair, but things got downright personal yesterday between members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Attacks on Alito Unfair, Supporters Say
– Supporters of Judge Samuel Alito are condemning what they consider unfair attacks on the Supreme Court nominee – attacks that distressed his wife to the point of tears on Wednesday...

Democrat Biden Calls Confirmation Hearings 'Broken'
– Sen. Joseph Biden, one of the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee, on Thursday defended Democrats’ questioning of Judge Samuel Alito. Biden criticized Alito for “refusing to be drawn into a discussion” about where he stands on the issues, and he suggested that confirmation hearings might as well be scrapped...Read on.


(1) Don't plant crops because:
Global warming may force crop rethink
ABC Online - Australia
A Darling Downs, southern Queensland, climatologist says global warming may force many farmers to change what they grow during the next 20 years. ...

(2) Don't discourage the cutting down of the rain forest or forests for wood, we should actually encourage and actively and loudly advocate the destruction of ALL trees because:
Global warming: blame the forests
The Observer - UK
They have long been thought of as the antidote to harmful greenhouse gases, sufferers of, rather than contributors to, the effects of global warming. ...

(3) And finally...... why stop there? Let's not stop at the destruction of trees, let's eliminate all plant life because:
Plants adding to global warming, study says
Toronto Star - Canada
Yes, say scientists from a prestigious German research institute. But if that's so, they say, it's likely only because humans are ...

There. Problem solved. And you thought HeavyHanded was all brawn and no brain. HA!!

"[J]udges, therefore, should be always men of learning and experience in the laws, of exemplary morals, great patience, calmness, coolness, and attention. Their minds should not be distracted with jarring interests."

--- John Adams


United Nations Committee to consider child rights protection in ...
Morocco Times - Casablanca,Morocco
The Committee will discuss ways of strengthening cooperation with the different relevant bodies to further enhance the promotion and protection of child rights ...

Abramoff-linked probe focuses on 5 lawmakers

A Justice Department investigation into influence-peddling on Capitol Hill is focusing on a "first tier" of lawmakers and staffers, both Republicans and Democrats, say sources close to the probe that has netted guilty pleas from lobbyist Jack Abramoff.


European Union powers to set stage for United Nations sanctions on ...
NewKerala.com - Ernakulam,Kerala,India
The United States said yesterday it was ''more likely than ever'' Iran would be ... of diplomatic efforts by the European Union's three biggest nations to convince ...

United Nations Calls for $1.5 Bln to Combat Spread of Avian Flu
Bloomberg - USA
12 (Bloomberg) -- The United Nations World Health Organization said as much as $1.5 billion is needed during the next three years to combat the spread of avian ...

US threatens to take Syria to United Nations
Xinhua - China
... had been blocking the inquiry into the killing of former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri and threatened to take the issue to the United Nations for action ...

Analysis: Israel 'can destroy' Iran nukes
United Press International - USA
... statement saying, "It is clear that this step calls for a grave and immediate international response -- sending the issue to the United Nations Security Council ...


Trade surplus triples for China
Seattle Times - United States
China's trade surplus tripled to a record $102 billion in 2005 as exports jumped, increasing tensions with the US and European Union over the nation's currency ...

US envoy in China as rumours on N.Korea's Kim swirl
Reuters - USA
... in Beijing he would try to breathe life into stalled nuclear talks on Thursday as North Korean leader Kim Jong-il appeared to continue a secret trip to China. ...

Lawmaker aims to stop China's Net censorship
Boston Globe - United States
One of the most aggressive human rights activists in Congress has found a new cause: stamping out Internet censorship in China. ...

China going into 2006
iAfrica.com - Cape Town,South Africa
China expert Martyn Davies discusses the importance and complexity of the Chinese economy, how to measure growth, monetary policy and the outlook in the future ...

Chinese gearing up for U.S. car market
The Washington Times
Chinese companies are racing to enter the U.S. auto market. One manufacturer previewed this week at the North American International Auto Show, and another plans to hit dealerships by the end of next year.

US, Australia pledge millions to fight global warming
Hindu - Chennai,India
... Prime Minister John Howard pledged to pump 100 million Australian dollars (USD75 million) over five years into the effort, into fighting global warming. ...

Cardinal in ethnic row over 'Christian Scotland' remarks

THE head of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland has caused controversy among non-Christian faiths by telling them that they needed to realise they live in a Christian country.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


Expect More And Deadlier Terror Attacks This Year
Sin Chew Daily - Malaysia
... Just as Osama bin Laden built a global terrorist network using Afghanistan as its base, Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi is using Iraq to build a global network from North ...

Western nations condemn Iran's decision to re-start nuclear ...
CBC Calgary - Calgary,Alberta,Canada
Western nations are warning Iran it is risking the imposition of international sanctions because of a decision by Tehran to remove United Nations seals and ...

This time, Russia and China share West's anger at Iran
AZ Central.com - AZ,USA
... But criticism of Tehran this time was wider, including Russia and China, which have blocked past efforts to have Iran referred to Security Council. ...

China, Kazakhstan agree to further crack down on "three evil ...
People's Daily Online - Beijing,China
China and Kazakhstan agreed in Astana Wednesday to enhance a joint effort to crack down on the "three evil forces" to safeguard regional security. ...


None other than the esteemed snowmobile crasher Hugh Hewitt agrees with my position of transparency in looking at any lobbyist reform:
From Beyond The News
One Step Towards Transparency
—Hugh Hewitt

House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert is moving quickly to tighten the rules against lobbying abuse in the aftermath of the revelations about Jack Abramoff. One of the suggested reforms--barring former House members from the floor--is long overdue.

While many former members of the House are indeed upright and honorable men and women and while there is nothing inherently wrong with the practice of lobbying, the advantage given to former members to stroll the floor during any session creates at least an impression of undue influence that must be countered.

This single and substantive reform, which requires no law but a simple rule change, will be a bold statement about the speaker's agenda and the pace of reform. It should be implemented quickly--as one step in a process of reform that promotes a renewed transparency and integrity in our nation's Capitol.


From the Thomas More Law Center

Ann Arbor, MI — A high school principal’s decision prohibiting a student from wearing his pro-life shirt in school has been overturned by a federal district court. Judge Elfvin of the Western District of New York signed a permanent injunction ordering Fillmore Central High School located in Fillmore, New York to allow the student to wear his pro-life shirt to school. The Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, represented the student.

Richard Thompson, Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Law Center, stated: “This student courageously took a stand for his views and our constitution. The ruling is clear--public schools don’t have the right to silence the pro-life speech of students.”

The student’s shirt is distributed by the American Life League’s Rock for Life group and displayed the following message: “Abortion is Homicide. You will not silence my message. You will not mock my God. You will stop killing my generation. Rock for Life.” Fillmore Principal Kyle Faulkner told the student that he could not wear his shirt in school. The student was sent home for the day when he respectfully replied that he had a right to wear the shirt. The student then contacted the Thomas More Law Center.

The Law Center attempted to amicably resolve the dispute by sending a letter to school officials explaining that students have a First Amendment right to peacefully express their views at school. The United States Supreme Court has ruled that students do not shed their First Amendment rights at the schoolhouse gate. However, after school officials refused to acknowledge the student’s right to free speech, the Thomas More Law Center filed a lawsuit against his school for forcing him to remove his pro-life shirt and barring his free-speech rights.

The Thomas More Law Center was assisted by Chris Ferrara, of the American Catholic Lawyers Association, who acted as local counsel.

On September 6th, Judge Elfvin issued a preliminary injunction ruling that the student’s First Amendment rights had been violated, and ordered the school to allow him to wear his pro-life shirt to school until the lawsuit was resolved.

This past December, Judge Elfvin permanently ordered the school to allow the student to wear clothing in school that expresses his pro-life message. The judge also ordered the school district to pay the student nominal damages. The judge awarded a total of $24,600 in attorneys’ fees to the two law firms.

Julie Shotzbarger, Trial Counsel with the Thomas More Law Center, who handled the case, commented, “Students at Fillmore were allowed to wear all manner of shirts, including rock band shirts depicting bloody skulls, and shirts promoting sex, yet this public school singled out our client to silence his peaceful pro-life message.”

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Bolivia is Tottering

What does the rise of Evo Morales as president of Bolivia mean for the average American? More than you might think. Less than you might be inclined to have nightmares about. Here are the core facts. [More]

A man who develops himself is born twice.

There is no shame in not knowing; the shame lies in not finding out.

"He, therefore, who desires peace should prepare for war. He who aspires to victory should spare no pains to form his soldiers. And he who hopes for success should fight on principle, not chance."
--- Vegetius

20 held as Spain cracks recruiting cell
International Herald Tribune - France
... The recruits were then sent on to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the American forces' most wanted man in Iraq, and other militant leaders, the ministry said.

Today's Humor

China maps out strategic high-tech development for next 15 years

Part of their strategy is probably hoping (and helping) for an election of Hillary as president for two terms, giving them eight years to obtain technological advances from the U.S., much like they did with Bill. All they got to do is provide several million dollars of illegal campaign money and Hill and Bill can work their magic.

Xinhua - China
China will intensify its development of high technologies with strategic significance for next 15 years, Lu Yongxiang, President of the ...[more]


Kim Jong-sicko Jong-il Makes Surprise China Visit
Chosun Ilbo - Seoul,South Korea
North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has gone to China by special train, according to sources in the country. On Tuesday, Kim reportedly ...

Senator warns China of US anger at trade deficit
Washington Post - United States
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's currency exchange controls and trade surplus are fanning so much ire in Washington that Congress may pass legislation threatening ...

China's Vast Military Cuts Fat, Adds Muscle
Los Angeles Times - CA,USA
... BEIJING -- China, which has the largest military force in the world, is making important strides toward developing a lean, high-tech fighting machine, the ...

Detroit gets a glimpse of what's coming from China
DetNews.com - Detroit,MI,USA
The CK is a squat, five-seat compact that is Geely's flagship vehicle in China. ... Geely employs 6,000 people in China, officials said. ...

China boosts int'l image with peaceful diplomacy
China Daily - China
China has presented a dazzling diplomatic image to the world in the past year, said Wu Jianmin, president of Foreign Affairs College, in an interview with ...

Yahoo! News - USA
WASHINGTON -- My friends who travel to China these days return with oddly dreamy looks in their eyes. China is the "future of the world"! ...


Update to my NEW LIE OF THE WEEK post on the Abramoff scandal.

From Don Surber, "Howard Dean, M.D., is trying to deny this, but Capital Eye showed Abramoff and his clients gave $1,541,673 to Democrats from 2000-2006 and $2,909,588 to Republicans. This broke down to $204,253 from Abramoff (all to Republicans) and $4,215,508 from Indian casinos and $34,500 from the San Cruz casino."

By the way, Don Surber has taken a position, with which I agree, and has a good post about what a failure campaign finance reform has been and what a mistake it will be if we continue down a similar path with trying to legislate and restrict lobbyists through reform.

We should make it easier and more transparent. Go read his post on How Congress Will Exploit The Abramoff Scandal.



Diplomats from Mexico and Central America on Monday demanded guest worker programs and the legalization of undocumented migrants in the United States, while criticizing a U.S. proposal for tougher border enforcement.

Meeting in Mexico's capital, the regional officials pledged to do more to fight migrant trafficking, but indirectly condemned a U.S. bill that would make illegal entry a felony and extend border walls.

First objection: Demands? DEMANDS?

Second point: Sounds like mixed messages to me. They will do more to "fight migrant trafficking" but want "legalization of undocumented migrants" and are critical of our plans for tougher border enforcement.

"Migrants, regardless of their migratory status, should not be treated like criminals," they said.
Third point: If they have crossed over illegally, they HAVE broken U.S. law.
Derbez has called the measure _ which passed the U.S. House of Representatives last month but still must go before the Senate _ "stupid and underhanded," but was somewhat more restrained on Monday, saying "it's not the Mexican government's position to tell the U.S. Senate what to do."
How nice of you to acknowledge this.
Fox's spokesman, Ruben Aguilar, defended the administration's record on Monday, telling reporters that migration has declined in recent years,......
I must interject here with my fourth point: LIAR!!
..........though official figures show it remains at historically high levels.

Monday, January 09, 2006


"There are no Democrats who took money from Jack Abramoff, not one, not one single Democrat. Every person named in this scandal is a Republican. Every person under investigation is a Republican. Every person indicted is a Republican."

"This is a Republican finance scandal. There is no evidence that Jack Abramoff ever gave any Democrat any money. And we've looked through all of those FEC reports to make sure that's true."

--- Howard Dean

Problem is, Hillary Clinton has already acknowledged she had received money from Abramoff and will be donating $2000 to some charity. Let's not forget other Dems who have pledged to return donations from Abramoff, and that includes Sens. Tim Johnson and Barbara Mikulski. Oh, yeh, let's not forget leading House Democrat Charles Rangel.

Marks for Sharks: The Abramoff scandal may sink congressional Republicans if they don't get serious about spending reforms.

Incumbency Over Ideas

The House GOP's real problems.

"The real House GOP problem isn't about lobbyists so much as it is the atrophying of its principles. As their years in power have stretched on, House Republicans have become more passionate about retaining power than in using that power to change or limit the federal government. Gathering votes for serious policy is difficult and tends to divide a majority. Re-election unites them, however, so the leadership has gradually settled for raising money on K Street and satisfying Beltway interest groups to sustain their incumbency.

This strategy has maintained a narrow majority, but at the cost of doing anything substantial." READ ON.


"When it comes to forecasting the future, the birthrate is the nearest thing to hard numbers. If only a million babies are born in 2006, it's hard to have two million adults enter the workforce in 2026... And the hard data on babies around the Western world is that they're running out a lot faster than the oil is. 'Replacement' fertility rate—i.e., the number you need for merely a stable population, not getting any bigger, not getting any smaller—is 2.1 babies per woman. Some countries are well above that: the global fertility leader, Somalia, is 6.91, Niger 6.83, Afghanistan 6.78, Yemen 6.75. Notice what those nations have in common? Scroll way down to the bottom of the Hot One Hundred top breeders and you'll eventually find the United States, hovering just at replacement rate with 2.07 births per woman. Ireland is 1.87, New Zealand 1.79, Australia 1.76. But Canada's fertility rate is down to 1.5, well below replacement rate; Germany and Austria are at 1.3, the brink of the death spiral; Russia and Italy are at 1.2; Spain 1.1, about half replacement rate. That's to say, Spain's population is halving every generation. By 2050, Italy's population will have fallen by 22%, Bulgaria's by 36%, Estonia's by 52%... The latter half of the decline and fall of great civilizations follows a familiar pattern: affluence, softness, decadence, extinction... A society that has no children has no future."

--- Mark Steyn

"President Bush's post-Sept. 11, 2001, authorization to the National Security Agency to carry out electronic surveillance into private phone calls and e-mails is consistent with court decisions and with the positions of the Justice Department under prior presidents...I do not believe the Constitution allows Congress to take away from the president the inherent authority to act in response to a foreign attack. That inherent power is reason to be careful about who we elect as president..."

--- Former Clinton associate Attorney General John Schmidt

"The circumstances that endanger the safety of nations are infinite, and for this reason no constitutional shackles can wisely be imposed on the power to which the care of it is committed."

--- Alexander Hamilton


India eyes oil deals with China, analysts cautious
Reuters - USA
NEW DELHI/BEIJING, Jan 9 (Reuters) - India's oil minister will visit China this week hoping to cement energy ties between the oil-guzzling giants but analysts ...

China CNOOC buys 45 pct stake in Nigeria offshore oil block for ...
Forbes - USA
BEIJING (AFX) - China's CNOOC Ltd said it has agreed to buy a 45 pct stake in an oil block off the coast of Nigeria for 2.268 bln usd. ...

China 2005 trade surplus soars above $100 bln
Reuters - USA
BEIJING, Jan 9 (Reuters) - China had a record monthly trade surplus of about $13 billion in December, data indicated on Monday, a figure likely to lead to ...

Vietnam's northern province to further tap trade with China
People's Daily Online - Beijing,China
... in border gate economic zone, to help not only its commodities but also those from other Vietnamese localities penetrate more deeply into China, Vietnam News ...

China GDP grows at 9.6% in last 25 yrs
Economic Times - India
BEIJING: China's average GDP growth rate for the 1979-2004 period was on Monday revised to an impressive 9.6 per cent, 0.2 percentage point higher than the ...

China's Chery cars seen debuting in US at end of 2007
Reuters - USA
DETROIT (Reuters) - Imports into the United States of cars manufactured by China's Chery Automobile will likely begin at the end of 2007, the founder and

Splits emerge between Iraqi resistance groups

The Guerrillas who Came in from the Cold

Al-Hayat [Ar.]: Sources close to the guerrilla groups in Iraq told the pan-Arab, Saudi-backed London daily, al-Hayat that new disputes have exploded between it and the organization "al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia" led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, after he carried out last Thursday's bombings in Karbala and Ramadi. Dozens of Shiite and Sunni civilians were killed. The Iraqi guerrilla groups told al-Hayat that they would not unite with the Zarqawi group, as a result.

The Iraqi guerrilla groups say that they only attack the Occupation forces and avoid attacks on civilians, whereas Zarqawi deliberately targets the latter, having adopted a policy of launching a war against the Shiites. His group rarely tangles with the Americans, al-Hayat says, whereas the Iraqi guerrillas killed 5 Americans over the weekend and shot down a Blackhawk helicopter near Tal Afar. [This is the first claim I know of by the ex-Baathists to have shot down the helicopter.] READ ON.

Miscellaneous Humor


Delhi gets first winter ice in 70 years, Indian cold toll soars.

Indian vegetable vendors warm themselves by a roadside fire.

NEW DELHI - The Indian capital Sunday saw its first winter frost in 70 years as a cold wave sweeping in from the Himalayas killed more people in northern India overnight, officials said.

The capital city of 14 million people ordered schools shut for three days from Monday as the mercury for the first time since 1935 fell to 0.2 degrees Celsius (32.36 Fahrenheit), leaving mounds of ice on parked cars. READ ON.

Schumer warns of filibuster of Alito

During the Roberts hearings, Ch uckie Schumer said since Roberts had such a short track history as a judge, so little paper trail, he was going to have to answer many more questions than previous nominees. Now Schumer says since Alito has such a long resume as a judge, he was going to have to answer many more questions than previous nominees. Get it? Anything goes. So it stands to reason:

Schumer warns of filibuster of Alito
Democrats said yesterday that they may block the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr., depending on the answers the nominee gives at his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings, which begin today.

I heard a soundbite, and to the best of my recollection, it was Feinstein, who, when asked whether the abortion issue was grounds to filibuster Alito due to "extreme circumstances", she replied she thought it was at this point in time.

At this point in time? Huh? What the hell does that mean? It should have been easy to have a follow up question, or two. Like, "You mean there is a point in time when it wouldn't be grounds for filibustering?" And secondly, "When would that be?"

My guess is the real answer to those two questions would not be expressed, because the honest answer would be that it would not be grounds for a filibuster if, and only if, there was a clear majority on the bench that supported Roe v. Wade; but she would be unable to come out and say that.

Iraqis receive training in Iran
Shi'ite clerics are recruiting young Iraqis to go to neighboring Iran for political indoctrination and militia training, said the uncle of one young man who recently returned from a one-month session.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

On the Editorial Page: Banish The Abramoff Republicans.

As I have said, this kind of bungling is more about greed than it is about politics, and to the extent it is about politics, it is caused by having backbones of linguini ... unable to stand up to pressure groups and vote on conscience and what's good for the country as a whole. (H.H.)

Addendum: I would add, 'Banish the Abramoff Democrats, too'.

Zarqawi asks Sunnis to shun politics for jihad - Web
Reuters.uk - UK
DUBAI (Reuters) - The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, criticised moderate Sunnis for taking part in electoral politics and called on them to ...

Searchlight's Dim Bulb

From Opinion Journal:

"U.S. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid called for the resignation of Homeland Security Department Secretary Michael Chertoff on Wednesday, one day after the government dropped Las Vegas from a list of cities considered potential high-risk targets eligible for special anti-terrorism grants," reports the Las Vegas Review-Journal:

"Anyone who can't see that Las Vegas is a high-risk area doesn't deserve to serve in a position like that," Reid said. "We had more visitors on New Year's Eve than they had in Times Square and we're not a high-risk area? For heaven's sakes."

Here's the killer paragraph that I really like:

We wanted to send Reid an e-mail expressing our support for his position, so we went to the "E-Mail Form" on his Web site. The form includes a pull-down menu to select the "general topic of your message." There are 29 topics, but homeland security is not among them.

Heh, heh. I've nothing to add.


"Representative John Murtha, the Pennsylvania Democrat who has come to national prominence since his call for a quick withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, said Thursday night that he worries about "a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there's a victory."

"Appearing at a town meeting in Arlington, Virginia, with fellow Democratic Rep. James Moran, Murtha said, "A year ago, I said we can't win this militarily, and I got all kinds of criticism." Now, Murtha told the strongly antiwar audience, "I worry about a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there's a victory when I think it should be a redeployment as quickly as possible and let the Iraqis handle the whole thing."

"Does anyone still want to say it is unfair to characterize Murtha as rooting for American defeat?"

From Opinion Journal

The Wisdom in Wiretaps

Bush critics seek war-powers loopholes to benefit terrorists.

"The Bush Administration's use of warrantless wiretaps in the war on terrorism continues to generate controversy, and Congress is planning hearings. Some of the loopier elements of the Democratic Party have even suggested the wiretaps are grounds for impeachment. But the more we learn about the practice, the clearer it is that the White House has been right to employ and defend it.

The issue is not about circumventing normal civilian Constitutional protections, after all. The debate concerns surveillance for military purposes during wartime. No one would suggest the President must get a warrant to listen to terrorist communications on the battlefield in Iraq or Afghanistan. But what the critics are really insisting on here is that the President get a warrant the minute a terrorist communicates with an associate who may be inside in the U.S. That's a loophole only a terrorist could love."

What they want is a terrorists' "Bill of Rights." -H.H.
Read the rest of the op-ed piece here.

United Nations rights chief tells Nepalese to stop gross abuses

Yeh, or we are gonna get pissed off.
"The UN human rights commissioner, Louise Arbour, urged the Nepalese government and Maoist rebels to stop fighting and abusing civilians now that a four month cease-fire has ended."
Stop this childish behavior, now, damnit!

Referring to the executions, abductions, attacks on buses, indiscriminate bombing of civilian areas and widespread torture where children have been killed, recruited, used as informers, and arbitrarily detained and beaten, Ms. Arbour says,
"It is a tragedy for the people of Nepal that full-scale armed conflict may now resume....But there need not and must not be the same gross violations of international humanitarian law and human rights standards that have been perpetrated during previous phases of the conflict."
Okay, okay, Ms. Arbour, you make it very clear you are not happy with the present situation, so what's the bottem line?
"Those on either side of the conflict who commit violations must be held accountable -- not only the perpetrators but also those in command of forces which commit such acts may be subject to individual criminal responsibility before a court of law,'' Arbour said.
Very well, then. There you have it. They have been put on notice that the U.N. is NOT AT ALL HAPPY with their behavior. Now that we have that distraction taken care of, let's get back to the more important matters at hand, shall we......like global warming perhaps?

Unity government at hand, Iraqi says

Iraq's fractious political groups are moving ahead to shape a national-unity government, progress that should help stop the carnage of the past several days, the prime minister and other leaders said yesterday. READ ON.

U.S. trying to widen Iraqi rebel split with Al Qaeda

U.S. officials are talking with local Iraqi insurgent leaders to exploit a rift that has opened between homegrown insurgents and radical groups like Al Qaeda, and to draw the local leaders into the political process, according to a Western diplomat, an Iraqi political leader and an Iraqi insurgent leader. READ ON.


Keep an eye on Iraq, China, Iran
Miami Herald, FL
BY TRUDY RUBIN. January gives a foreign-affairs columnist the excuse to predict what will be the most gripping stories of 2006, and ...


China posts 20% growth in tax revenues excluding tariffs
Xinhua - China
8 (Xinhuanet) -- China posted a record high of 3.0866 trillion yuan (381 billion US dollars ) in tax revenues, excluding tariffs and agricultural tax in 2005 ...

China Again Warns Taiwan Against Apparent Moves Towards ...
Chosun Ilbo - Seoul,South Korea
China is warning Taiwan it will face harsh consequences if it continues to move towards independence. The latest threat came after ...

Australian exports to China soar
The Age - Melbourne,Victoria,Australia
CHINA has deepened its trade ties with Australia, becoming this country's second-biggest export market and source of imports, new figures show, but the Asian ...

China outlines plans for tax reforms in 2006
China Daily - China
China will spare no effort to advance its tax reform this year, mulling over efforts to press ahead with reform of resources tax, and improve its proposal on ...

China, Bolivia vow to enhance economic co-op
Xinhua - China
... relations. The friendly and cooperative ties between China and Bolivia is built on the solid political foundation, Tang said. "As ...


When you read this article, bear in mind, China was exempted from the Kyoto treaty.

But can China square confucianism with explosive economic growth?
The Observer - UK
... Polluted rivers, ravaged landscapes and permanently shrouded skylines bear witness to the fact that China's industrial revolution has come at a heavy cost to ...